How Old Is This Fracture? Radiologic Dating of Fractures in Children

http://www.ajronline.org/cgi/content/full/184/4/1282

Ingrid Prosser 1 ; Sabine Maguire1 ; Sara K. Harrison 2 ; Mala Mann 3 ; Jonathan R. Sibert 1 ; Alison M. Kemp 1

Welsh Child Protection Systematic Review Group
1 Department of Child Health, Cardiff University, Wales College of Medicine, Academic Centre, Llandough Hospital, Penarth CF64 2XX, Wales, United Kingdom.
2 Department of Radiology, Cardiff University, Wales College of Medicine, Heath Hospital, Heath Park, Cardiff CF14 4XN, Wales, United Kingdom.
3 Duthie Library, Cardiff University, Wales College of Medicine, Heath Hospital, Heath Park, Cardiff CF14 4XN, Wales, United Kingdom.
Received August 5, 2004; accepted after revision September 9, 2004. Supported by the National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children of the United Kingdom.

OBJECTIVE: We conducted a systematic review of the literature to define the evidence for radiologic dating of fractures in children in the context of child protection.

CONCLUSION: Radiologic dating of fractures is an inexact science. Most radiologists date fractures on the basis of their personal clinical experience, and the literature provides little consistent data to act as a resource. There is an urgent need for research to validate the criteria used in the radiologic dating of fractures in children younger than 5 years.